BILLINGS – With the mid-term election one week away on Nov. 6, a Montana voter-advocacy group is encouraging students to get out and vote in Billings.
On Tuesday, Forward Montana hosted its fourth annual Student Voter Day at Montana State University-Billings to celebrate civic engagement on campuses and help students make their voices heard at the polls.
“Student voters are frequently first-time voters, and as a result sometimes have less access to information about the candidates,” said Micheal Nelson, field manager with Forward Montana.
Launched in 2004, Forward Montana aims to mobilize young Montanans to use the democratic process to improve their lives and the lives of fellow Montanans, according to its website.
“Recent polls have shown that it’s going to be (an) extremely tight race, and young people have a chance to really decide what the next Congress looks like,” said Nelson. “We are asking young folks to utilize their power. The issues on the ballot this year in particular matter to young Montanans, like 6-mill levy. That highly affects education costs. So student voter day definitely has a strong connection to that issue.”
Both the Montana U.S. Senate race, between Republican Matt Rosendale and Democratic incumbent Jon Tester, and the U.S. House, where Democrat Kathleen Williams is trying to unseat incumbent Republican Greg Gianforte, are expected to be close.
The 6-mill levy is a ballot measure that would renew funding for higher education.
Student Voter Day was hosted by Forward Montana on campuses across the state.